The Sanitation Department's plan for a 12-story garbage truck garage and a companion salt shed on the west end of Spring Street?hated by locals, protested by minor celebrities and so painfully close to the Urban Ass House?was approved by the City Council. Needless to say, Hudson Square residents who fought like hell against the three-district garbage facility are not taking the news very well. Some are even bringing up the "Joe Rose situation," in which the 12th Avenue plot of land once targeted for the garage suddenly became a 66-story hotel developed by a friend of Mayor Bloomberg. Funny how those things work out, eh? Anyway, neighborhood activists are up in arms, but there were some tweaks to the garage and shed plan.
One source connected to the garage opposition tell us:
The fix was in, 40-1 with one against, Charles Barron. Christine Quinn, whose district the garage sits in, voted for it, and Gerson - whose district sits 300ft to the south - abstained so as to try not to piss off Quinn and the mayor and his constituents. There is huge anger in Hudson Square, Soho and Tribeca a massive efforts are underway to make sure Quinn an Gerson lose their seats in 2009. The first of several lawsuits will be filed Monday.Fun! And as for the plan itself, there are changes, which this enraged dispatch from anti-garage Hudson Squarers details with a heavy dose of vitriol:Members of the Hudson Square community were still hopeful as late as yesterday morning, that City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, our LOCAL elected official, might have used her stature to convince her colleagues that the DSNY Plan to build its "Taj Mahal" at Spring Street was "too big, too costly, and ill-conceived". Instead, the "changes" that her office brokered with Deputy Mayor Edward Skyler, merely reduced DSNY plans to give its 74 employees "free parking" at a cost to taxpayers of $459k per space to giving only 37 employees "free parking". Plans to give higher-ups 40,000 sf of locker room and office spaces with waterfront views remain unchanged.
We do applaud the Speaker for eliminating DSNY plans to re-fuel any and all City vehicles making its Fuel Depot a magnet destination while adding to the unmitigable congestion and air pollution of the Canal Street (CATS) and Route 9A Corridors "except in emergencies". The PANY/NJ still can't be pleased that they will be pumping all of that bad air in and out of the Holland Tunnel if the three district garage concept continues.
DSNY has also committed to putting four walls around a 75' High Salt Shed at Canal and West Streets. Parks advocates however are fuming over the potential impact of wintery salt and snow showers on the fragile eco-system of both Canal Park and the Hudson River Park and the risks of storing super-heated salt in a sealed environment during the hot summer months, when experts recommend a maximum storage temperature of 102 degrees. We wonder where the City will find funding to air-condition their Salt Shed while they are taking a budget axe to slash programs for most other Municipal services?
Did we mention the 17 trees that the City has committed to plant around the 12-story garage and the Belgian pavers (cobblestones) that will enclose the tree pits to "improve the pedestrian experience"? Or the 9 trees around the Salt Shed? How Washington Street will need to be torn up for a year or more to allow Con Edison to install steam piping to heat the new garage?
We thought this one was ugly before, but something tells us we ain't seen nothing yet.
· Garbage Garage coverage [Curbed]